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Campus Life

Certify Your Workplace, Campus Event for Sustainability

If you help improve sustainability on campus, there’s recognition for that.

NC State’s University Sustainability Office offers certification for campus workplaces and campus events that incorporate sustainability practices.

“Successful sustainability pursues balanced, ethical solutions that are economically viable, environmentally sound and socially just so that current and future generations may thrive,” said Lindsay Batchelor, who manages the certification program. “These certifications are a way to recognize sustainability efforts on campus, as well as raise awareness of actions that can make our campus even more sustainable.”

Each certification features an online survey through which participants self-report sustainable actions. These actions earn points toward a total score and certification at the Contributor, Steward or Champion level.

“Perhaps you complete the certification once and, in the process, learn more about sustainable actions that could boost your score. Then, you go back to your team and say, ‘Here’s more we could do,’” Batchelor said.

Those changes could have positive impacts for campus air quality, waste reduction, efficiency and more.

While the event and workplace certification programs are not new (more than 200 campus events and 60 workplaces have achieved certification since 2012), the Sustainability Office recently updated each program’s certification criteria and scoring.

In both certifications, points are earned for actions in categories such as energy and water conservation, health and wellness, waste reduction, diversity, sustainable transportation and purchasing.

Certified sustainable workplaces and events are recognized at the annual Celebration of NC State Sustainability, which takes place in April as part of NC State’s Earth Month.

“Sustainability is a collective effort. These certifications are a great way to involve the entire campus community in improving the sustainability of our campus,” Batchelor said.

This post was originally published in Sustainability News.